Friday, January 02, 2015

The Best of 2014: Looking Back at Some Favorite Blog Posts Before Moving Forward

Per a variety of measures, both personal and universal, it would probably seem foolish for me to call 2014 a wonderful year.

I only worked for about 4 months, and a job that I expected to continue into the New Year hasn't.

I was healthy but in an unhealthy way, which is to say I didn't lose the weight that would undoubtedly improve a lot of things.

I did not experience any major life events, or even notable developments, whether romantically, financially, professionally or otherwise.

So some people might think I had a pretty crappy year, and perhaps in some ways I did.

But I've never been one to base my day-to-day happiness--or even my measure of "success"--on my job or income level, even when I've had relatively prosperous years and earned considerable professional praise.

To whatever extent I can, I try to find some way, or perhaps several, to acutely enjoy every day--and ideally to enlighten myself along the way.

As this blog illustrates--even just through my series of Best of 2014 posts over the past two weeks--I have enjoyed a great deal of quality entertainment, culture, dining and more. And even more so, I'm grateful for wonderful family and friends, old and new, who are worth more than me than riches ever could be.

So with some positive employment prospects but nothing near definite, I'm beginning 2015 with hopes that things may improve professionally--for me and others--but appreciative of just how terrific 2014 was overall, especially in terms of things that truly matter.

So before looking forward, I thought I'd look back once more at 2014 and some of the things I wrote in this space.

According to statistics provided by Blogger, Seth Saith once again had over 200,000 pageviews in 2014, and I can't deny that writing and maintaining it--for no monetary gain--is one of the more fulfilling aspects of my life.

So forgive my self-indulgence in sharing a few of my most-read and otherwise favorite Blog Posts.

For the most part, these won't include reviews--you can find links to some of my favorite shows & attractions in my Best Concerts, Plays, Musicals, Other Live Entertainment and Museums posts--but more in-depth pieces I (and occasionally others) wrote on a variety of topics.

Nelson Algren
Top 5 Most-Read Seth Saith Posts:

1. Outstanding Retrospective Takes Kandinsky Out of the Abstract
2. The Socio-Cinematic 70s: When the Movies Had Something to Say
3. Celebrating 'Black History Month' with Direct Links to the Past
4. Guest Post: In His Old Neighborhood, Nelson Algren's 105th Birthday Party Celebrates a Chicago Gone By -- written by my friend Ken
5. Alone in a Paradise, Neil Young Captivates the Faithful  

Other Favorites of Mine

- A Legend in His Own Time...and Place -- Chicago Concert Review: Buddy Guy at Legends
- A Master of His Art: An Appreciation of Philip Seymour Hoffman (1967-2014)
- "How Can There Be Global Warming When It's So Friggin' Cold?"
- It Was 50 Years Ago Today, The Beatles Taught the World to Play: The Impact of Their First Appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show
- Pulling the Christopher Wool Over My Eyes? -- Pondering the Current State of Art
- Neo-Bohemian Rhapsody: On Great Cheap Jazz and Perhaps Even the Sound of Salvation
Catherine Deneuve
- Crunching Numbers for the Boss (and Reasons to Believe Bruce Springsteen is the Greatest Entertainer of Our Time)
- Happy 100th Birthday, Wrigley Field! -- Celebrating a Century of Splendor (and Futility)
- All Things Must Pass: On the End of Hot Doug's and the Admirable Antithesis of Conventional Wisdom
- Another Frank Lloyd Wright Tour -- of Chicago's Emil Bach House -- and a Guide
- The Beautiful Oeuvre of Catherine Deneuve
- Are You Ready For Some Futebol? Jordan and Paolo Preview the World Cup (Providing Help for Neophytes Like Me) -- follow up pieces: 2, 3, 4
- Magic in the Night, 30 Years Burning Down the Road: Remembering My First Springsteen Concert
- London Beyond the Werewolves, Again: An Updated Travel Guide
- Brennan, Buscemi and Greer, Oh, My! -- A Salute to Character Actors Who Always Make the Scene
- Revitalized by the Resurrection of Death -- A Pioneering Punk Band, a Great Documentary and the Beauty of Life's Surprises
- Mourning the Death of Greatness, Lamenting the Lack of Its Rebirth -- On the Passing of Robin Williams and Other Legends
Germany 7 Brazil 1
- With Incisive, Insightful 'Flash Boys,' Michael Lewis Deftly Decodes the Dubious Blur of High-Frequency Trading -- Book Review
- A Story of Friendship that Begins on the First Day of Kindergarten, 1973
- Sorry Haters, but I Still Love U2
- Subterranean Passages: Down in the Pedway, Time Remains Fixed 'Aroundthe Clock'
- Fundamental Transference: Great Artists' Expressions of the Abstract Didn't Come Straight Away
- What a Pane in the Glass: Rueing the Impending Closure of Navy Pier's Smith Museum of Stained Glass
- Takin' It to the Streets: A Friend's First-Hand Account as Chicago Comes Alive in Protest on Thursday Night - written by an anonymous friend

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